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February 15, 2006

Performance and Achievment Meeting of Jan 30, 2006

The Jan 30, 2006 Performance and Achievement Committee meeting begins two(2) sessions on heterogeneous classrooms starting with a presentation by Professor Adam Gamoran, Director of the Wisconsin Center for Educational Research (WCER).

QT Video
The Quicktime video of the meeting is approximately 1 hour 10 minutes long. Click on the image at left to watch the video. The video contains chapter headings which allow quick navigation to each speakers presentations. Please allow time for download to your computer.

After taking care of initial business, Superintendent Rainwater discusses definitions of "heterogeneous" and "homogeneous" in the context of students in classrooms, and the difference between these terms and "tracking". It is acknowledged that there are pros and cons to both homogeneous and heterogeneous groupings. Because there is truly no homogeneous grouping, since all classes contain students of differing preparation, the real question to keep in mind is at what point does the range of student preparation exceed the ability of teachers to differentiate instruction to serve the needs of the students in that class.

Dr. Adam Gamoran is introduced. Dr. Gamoran is a Professor of Sociology at UW-Madison, and the Directory of WCER. One of his areas of expertise and study is heterogeneous/homogeneous instruction.

Dr. Gamoran presents an overview of his and others research on the topic. To follow along with his presentation, download his PowerPoint presentation in either ppt, or pdf formats. His paper, Gamoran, Adam. 2004. "Classroom Organization and Instructional Quality." Pp. 141-155 in M. C. Wang and H. J. Walberg (Eds.), Can Unlike Students Learn Together? Grade Retention, Tracking, and Grouping, Greenwich, CT: Information Age Publishing. , is included.

Board questions and discussion followed, including discussions of the role of the Board in decisions of curriculum direction and evaluation.

Posted by Larry Winkler at February 15, 2006 10:39 PM